I don’t read the Amarillo Globe-News regularly these days. I see an online version of it on my fancy-schmancy smart phone. So I am able to catch glimpses of its editorials, commentary and news reports when I have the time or the inclination to look at them.
However, an editorial today caught my eye. It makes me wonder: Is the Globe-News morphing into a satellite publication of the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal?
Why ask that? Well, the editorial was a lengthy piece praising the selection of new regents to the Texas Tech University System Board of Regents. It caused me a bit of head-scratching.
I worked as editorial page editor of the Globe-News for nearly 18 years when the paper was owned by Morris Communications Corp. I don’t remember writing a single editorial commenting on the quality of a governor’s appointments to the Tech Board of Regents. Why? Because the school is located in Lubbock; its primary concern is with its Lubbock campus. Yes, Tech has a medical school in Amarillo. However, we never saw the need to devote what looked like a lengthy editorial singing the praises of Tech regents, unless they had some connection to the Texas Panhandle; I didn’t detect any such connection in the piece I read today.
Indeed, the editorial noted the appointments include “a woman and two Lubbock businessmen.” That’s critical to the Panhandle? Really?
Morris has sold the Globe-News and the Avalanche-Journal to another company. The new owner has consolidated the papers’ news and editorial staffing. The executive editor lives in Amarillo, but has control of the A-J’s newsroom; the director of commentary lives in Lubbock, but has control of the G-N’s editorial page; the publisher also lives in Lubbock, but has control of the Globe-News overall operation; same for the company’s newly named circulation director.
I don’t like reading commentary about Lubbock-area issues in the Amarillo newspaper. It makes me wonder — and fills me with concern, if not dread — that the papers are morphing into some sort of regional publication.
The Texas Panhandle and the South Plains have issues that are unique to their respective regions. I do not want to see comments on them melded into a single publication.
I have concern that such a melding is occurring.